Special Education Programs at The Gateway School
Certified teachers assisted by trained paraprofessionals provide individualized and small group instruction in a small class setting. A multi-sensory approach is used with individualized and modified techniques. A wide variety of materials are used to help each child to reach his or her full academic potential.
From our range of academic, life skills, technology (STEM), support, and transition services, The Gateway School’s goal is to harness the best from our special needs students in New Jersey.
Our academic program infuses functional living skills within a curriculum aligned to New Jersey State Learning Standards (NJSLS). The program includes instruction in all main content areas, literacy and reading, mathematics, science, and social studies, in addition to specialized instruction in adaptive physical education, music, and art. We work with students of various disabilities and learning levels including students with Autism, emotional and behavioral disorders, and other health and learning impairments. Every student receives a personalized education program incorporating strategies such as differentiated instruction, small group and project-based learning, and community-based instruction.
Our life skills program includes functional living skills instruction such as self-care, personal hygiene, laundry, cooking and cleaning. Daily living skills training is received in our ADL classroom which includes a fully functioning kitchen, laundry, and living area. Students also receive social skills instruction through individual and group activities, as well as community-based instruction. Staff accompanies students into the community to practice appropriate social interaction at the local library, parks, supermarkets, and other public spaces. Teaching the whole child includes lessons about healthy relationships, gaining confidence and self-esteem, learning appropriate everyday social behavior, and encouraging social success.
Each of our classrooms include multiple devices for engaging, multi-sensory, technology-based learning. We infuse technological support and academics across all areas of our program. From web-based instruction in all content areas, to student support through communication devices such as FM systems and iPads, to our new STEM Lab focusing on Science Technology Engineering and Math instruction through hands-on, project-based learning. Each of our classrooms also include an interactive whiteboard by Mimio Board for engaging group activities.
The Gateway School features occupational therapy, speech therapy, physical therapy, counseling, and nursing services. Our behavioral support services includes consultation with a certified BCBA.
Transition services are designed throughout the curriculum to foster independence and develop work skills and work-related behaviors or “soft skills” in order to prepare our students for future supported employment. Each student will have the opportunity to engage in pre-vocational activities and in-school work jobs starting during the elementary grades. As our students mature they will transition towards community-based work sites, with structured learning experiences under the direct supervision of employment specialists.
Our program provides the student with the experience of job sampling within the school setting to explore aptitudes and interests. During high school the students are given the opportunity to have several structured learning experiences at local participating businesses that have agreed to partner with us. Our staff accompanies each student to the community site to assist them in performing their required tasks and to ensure appropriate interaction with co-workers and supervisors.